A 96 per cent resounding strike vote was triggered recently by pay gaps between hospitality and food services staff at Queen’s University’s conference centre compared with other employees doing the same jobs on campus.
According to CUPE 229, Donald Gordon Hotel and Conference Centre food service workers make up to $6 less per hour than those on main campus. Negotiations between CUPE 229, who represent the workers, and their employer, Aramark, are set to resume on August 17.
“We hope for the same respect as main campus workers, we are hoping to bridge that gap and make it a fair system,” CUPE 229 President Sherri Ferris says.
Ferris says previously, the Donald Gordon Centre was run by a private person, and the staff were not unionized.
Communications Manager, Corporate Communications at Aramark Chris Collom wrote in an email, “We have had several meetings with union leaders and the bargaining committee in an effort to reach a new agreement. The company intends to keep working with the Union toward a settlement that works for everyone. In the event of a work stoppage, we have contingency plans to ensure that services are not interrupted.”
According to Ferris, should talks between Aramark and CUPE break down, they could be in a strike position for early September.
Listen to the full CFRC interview with Sherri Ferris below: